Local law enforcement veteran is unanimous choice to
head new department, becomes the first police chief
KILLINGTON - Killington's longtime constable Whit Montgomery has
been named as the town's first chief of police - a job that was
created in March after the Selectboard approved the formation of a
new police department in February. Killington Town Manager
Seth Webb made the announcement Tuesday, June 7.
Montgomery's appointment comes following a full assessment of
applicants by the hiring committee, made up of Webb, Selectboard
member Patty McGrath, and Richard Gauthier, executive director of
the Vermont Criminal Justice Training Council. According to
Webb, the town received four applications for the position. At
the conclusion of the process, which included personal interviews
and an extensive background check, Montgomery was the unanimous top
selection of the committee.
"Whit is highly regarded by Vermont law enforcement, and his
experience as Constable and knowledge of Killington made him the
obvious choice," said Webb. "We are fortunate to have him at the
helm of our new department."
A 14-year law enforcement veteran, Montgomery started his career
in his hometown of Killington following his 1999 graduation from
the Vermont Police Academy. He served as Second Constable for
virtually all of that time, until his election to First Constable
in March of this year. He is also the co-founder of Killington
Search and Rescue (KSAR), a nonprofit organization that specializes
in backcountry rescues.
"I'm honored to accept this important job, in this community
that I love," said Montgomery. "My roots and my future are
here in Killington, and I am totally committed to working with town
officials, businesses, citizens and the Resort to make our new
police department successful and well respected."
In his new role as Chief of Police, Montgomery will work under
the supervision of the Town Manager and be responsible for managing
a department consisting of two part-time special officers and
overseeing contractual services for animal control and other
special details as needed.
The job position is effective immediately.
Montgomery's plans for the new department include creating
performance measures for local law enforcement, and introducing a
greater focus on Community Oriented Policing, including a
Neighborhood Watch, an anti-bullying program and a drug and alcohol
awareness program within the Elementary School and more.
The transition from a constable department to a municipal police
department began in February of this year when the Killington
Selectboard unanimously voted for the change. Selectboard chair
Chris Bianchi explains the move. "We wanted to create a police
department that better prepares our officers and increases their
effectiveness by giving them increased access to criminal history
and information sharing with other law enforcement."
According to Webb, the Vermont State Police has been very
supportive of Killington's transition, and will continue to provide
patrols when the department is not on duty.
Killington, home to Killington and Pico Ski Resorts, is a resort
community located at the crossroads of U.S. Route 4 and Vermont
100. While the year round population is under 1,000 people, the
Town has over 2,500 second home owners and plays hosts to tens of
thousands of tourists on any given weekend.